A tour of the state of Gujarat had been on my bucket list since long. I got a 10 days window and decided to convert the thought into action. The plans were made in a hurry. COVID enforced partial lockdown did help to an extent as reservations were easy to get and the family was together. 10 Jan was the day we took a final call and on 22 Jan we were off on our air cum road tour of the vibrant state.
In this blog I intend giving just a brief glimpse of the journey. The details of each place we visited will follow in a series of blogs later.
Gujarat …. A brief introduction….
For the less informed, the state of Gujarat lies bon the western coast of India. It is the fifth largest state by area and ninth largest by population. Gujarat also has the longest coast line amongst all Indian states.
It is one of the most vibrant and developed states of India. The state has a rich cultural and historical heritage. It was the main area of the Indus Valley Civilisation. Lothal, Dholavira and Gola Dhoro, the known ancient cities of Indus valley form part of Gujarat.
We landed at Ahmedabad from Delhi on 22 Jan 21. On 23 Jan we undertook a road tour of Modhera which boasts of the famous Sun temple. Later part of the day we visited Patan the home to Rani ka Vav (the most beautiful step well in India). In the evening we returned to Ahmedabad after a short visit to Akshardham.
On 24 Jan we took of by road to Bhuj and on 25th Jan visited the famous Rann of Kutch.
On 26 Jan we reached religious town of Dwarka on the west coast and paid a visit to the famous Dwarkadheesh temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna. On 27 Jan, we visited the island of Beyt Dwarka and Shri Nageshwar, the 10th Jyotirlinga. We reached the town of Veraval in the evening and visited the 1st Jyotirlinga at Somnath.
The early part of 28th Jan was spent in visiting sites/ temples around Somnath. In the late afternoon we reached the beautiful island of Diu for a relaxing two days stay.
On 29 Jan, late evening, we reached Sasangir the home to famous Asiatic Lions. On 29 Jan we got the experience of two of the best Jungle Safaris we have ever been to in India.
On 30 Jan we bid goodbye to Gujarat from Ahmedabad.
The Weather and the Roads….
Gujarat and Rajasthan are two of the most pollution free states in India. Both also have the best of the roads. Even in the city of Ahmedabad the air sky was blue and air fresh. One did not get hassled by pollution anywhere throughout the road journey.
The roads journey was lovely. All roads were beautiful and in a good state of maintenance barring a patch between Diu and Sasangir. Both sides of the road have lush green agricultural fields and fruit orchards.
November to Feb is the best season to visit Gujarat.
I was amazed to see the greenery along the roads. To be frank it was the first time I saw cultivation of multiple crops ion one region and one season. The crops ranged from oil seeds like castor, cotton, and mustard to grains like wheat, rice, black gram and variety of pulses to herbs/ spices like cumin seed, fennel, coriander and multiple variety of vegetables. The fruits included mangoes, bananas, papayas and coconuts. Hats off to the farming community of Gujarat.
After spending 10 days in Gujarat, I can say it with conviction that it is one of the most vibrant states of India. One must visit Gujarat to get the first-hand experience of the culture, history and life of the people.
Kuch din to gujaro Gujarat mein….banta hai yaar….Ankhein khul jaayengee…( A visit to Gujarat will serve as an eye opener to all tourists)